Kimberley – Tensions broke out on Tuesday between the family of a Kimberley woman who was killed and burnt beyond recognition by her former boyfriend and the man’s current fiancée, Kenee-Lee Kruger, who was on Tuesday sentenced for defeating the ends of justice.
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The family of murdered Sheshney Blaauw on Tuesday told Kruger that although she does not have to spend more time behind bars, as her sentence was suspended, they were pleased that she had spent a period of time incarcerated.
Kruger was in custody for about two years after she and her fiancé, Dennis September, were charged with the kidnapping and murder of Blaauw.
September is the father of Blaauw’s child.
Blaauw’s charred body was discovered next to the Kenilworth Cemetery, close to Beefmaster, on October 27, 2015 after she was murdered and her body burnt beyond recognition.
Illegal miners who came across the body were not sure whether it was a human body or that of a doll that had been burnt.
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September was arrested on November 11, 2015 and in November this year was sentenced to 13 years’ imprisonment for the murder and a further three years for the disposal of the body after he burnt it.
Kruger was on Tuesday sentenced in the Kimberley Regional Court to two years’ imprisonment, which was wholly suspended for five years on condition that she is not found guilty of another offence, after she pleaded guilty to a charge of defeating the ends of justice.
Blaauw’s family, who attended the sentencing, told Kruger that they had warned her about September.
“I hope you still remember that I told the day before the incident to look carefully at the man you are involved with I warned you,” said one of Blaauw’s sisters.
Her other sister added that although Kruger will not spend any more time behind bars, she will still be haunted by the murder.
“Murder is murder no matter. Only my sister, September and this woman know what happened on that day. My sister will never come back but I know that my sister will not let this woman be in peace,” she said.
The sisters said that they had over the years tried to find closure over the murder.
“We are not angry at her our sister is gone. She can continue with her life and so will we.”
Kruger had previously said in her police statement that she had not known the whereabouts of the deceased after a missing person report was opened.
In her plea explanation, Kruger said that she had lied as she was afraid of September.
She said that at the time she gave the police statement she knew that Blaauw had been strangled to death by September and she had also witnessed how he disposed of the body.
Kruger further said that she had witnessed September strangle the deceased after she had gone to talk to him about their child.
“I was 19 years old at the time of the offence and had the previous year graduated from a special needs school, NJ Heyns, for pupils who are academically slow. I have no previous convictions and had been in custody for two years awaiting trial and was only released on November 9, 2017 and was under house arrest pending this hearing.
“I was romantically involved with September, who was sentenced for the crime last month. September is seven years older than me and was in a previous relationship with Blaauw and shared a five-year-old son with the deceased. There were problems regarding September’s access to the child as Blaauw would not allow him to see his child when he was with me,” the statement read.
Kruger stated that on the day of the incident, September had sent her a message asking her to arrange a meeting with Blaauw to discuss their child.
“I contacted Blaauw, who agreed to meet me at the clinic near my parents home. During our meeting, Blaauw indicated to me that she had no problem with me but that September was the problem and that there was some violence in their relationship. The deceased said that we must go to September and see him.”
Lee said that September strangled Blaauw to death inside his shanty.
“Once we were inside the shanty, Blaauw sat on the bed and September stood by a pole. I stood by the door. Blaauw and September started talking. The deceased asked September for a light for her cigarette. September lit a match and without warning grabbed Blaauw around the throat and strangled her.
“I became distraught and extremely fearful of September, who at the time threatened to do the same to me if I spoke about the incident.”
Kruger said that it was only after she was no longer under September’s influence that she told the truth about the matter.
“I was arrested and charged with kidnapping, murder and defeating the ends of justice with September. I testified fully as to the events on November 25, 2015 before Magistrate Brenda Roodt. I understand the wrongfulness of the statement I made in my affidavit on November 2, 2015 and deeply regret my actions.”